Archives for category: Training Skills

It’s the end of the main triathlon season now for most of us (unless your name is Don and you are Kona bound) so it’s time to celebrate with a special swimming session.  The Juniors will be at Thetford so we have the pool for 3 hours meaning we can do our favourite long set of 100s.

We will be doing two 1.5 hour sessions from 7am till 8:30am and 8:30am till 10am.  We will be doing a long set of 100s in both sessions giving you the opportunity in each session to do 5km in lane 1, 4.5km in lane 2, 4km in lane 3 and 3.5km in lane 4.  Or why not double up for a really monster set of distance training!?

Three things I’d like you to do on Saturday, please:

  1. Bring a drink and appropriate nutrition for the length of set you are planning to tackle.
  2. Focus on efficiency in your stroke and good technique – especially maintaining a high elbow catch with core rotation to finish each stroke strongly – when you are starting to fatigue.
  3. Enjoy both the personal challenge and sharing it with everyone else in your lane, too.

See you Saturday,

Rob

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Last week we did the Brownlee set of 100s, inspired by Jonny Brownlee’s performance in Rotterdam.  This week we are being inspired by Jess Learmonth who had a fantastic performance in the womens’ elite race.

Image result for jess learmonth itu grand final

She’s one of the fastest swimmers on the ITU circuit today so this week our main set will be based on one of her favourites.  The set consists of some good paced 100s and 50s with some steadier paced kick in between, both with and without a kick board.  Kick is a great way to work on your core so I hope you enjoy trying out this new set.

We are back to the usual swim times this week with the 8am session finishing at 9:15am.

See you Saturday!

Rob

I hope you were all as impressed as I was by all the action in Rotterdam last week – from both the Elites, Age Groupers, Para and especially members of our club that raced and Don has recently written about.  Inspired by their efforts I thought it was only fitting to do a set this week like the training they do themselves.  So we will be doing the Brownlee main set of progressively-paced 100s that we have done before.  This time, however, we will be making them 1-3 progressive, rather than 1-5 progressive as we usually do, to make it more of an action-packed set like the action we saw on from Rotterdam last week!

In the technique subset we will be doing some head-up front crawl and straight-arm recovery front crawl to help you focus on getting your stroke high for the main set.  Really think about a getting a quick catch when doing this – keeping it short and fast at the front of the stroke.  Then keep this going with a nice quick catch when you get into the full stroke swimming.

See you tomorrow,

Rob

The Juniors have time trials for the next two weeks so we will be finishing the 8am session at 9am to give them enough time.  That also means we can get the pool for 3 hours on October 7th, though, so put the date in the diary now for a good, long session!

It’s nearly the end of the season so we will only be keeping the faster paced sessions going until the end of September before we get into Winter training.  This week we will be doing a main set we haven’t done for a long time consisting of some very fast 200s.  You will be getting a massive 4 minute recovery between each 200 to allow you to swim each one nearly at max effort, during which time I would encourage everyone to swim at least 50m nice and easy.

This is a great set for working on your VO2 max and expanding the speed at which you can comfortably swim.  Aim to swim each 200 as fast and relaxed as possible, still with a good fast stroke rate, and ideally swim a negative split (i.e. swimming the second half slightly faster than the first half).  Then as you tire really try and hold onto your stroke.

See you Saturday,

Rob

I will be at the session this week but then away for the next two weeks so will leave the sessions in the box at the pool.  This year my holiday seems to coincide with our other Saturday coaches so you will be in charge of yourselves.  Whoever is at the pool first please help to put the lane ropes out and get the sessions out of the club box in the office for each lane.

This week we are doing some fast-paced 100s but with quite a bit of extra rest than usual.  Aim to swim them at the fastest pace you can maintain for the whole set.

Finally, there are a few extra keen triathletes I know who do like sessions while they are away when they have access to the pool so I have added some here.

See you Saturday,

Rob

It’s the return of the Will Clarke set this week after a fairly long absence from our Saturday morning training.  For those of you that have forgotten, or not done it before, it’s the set of alternating fast and easier paced 50s starting on a short turnaround time and going off longer turnaround times as the number of fast 50s increases.

This is a great set for both speed and speed endurance.  To get the most benefit I would recommend  focusing just on the fast 50s.  It is a challenge to do this at the start of the set when the turnaround times are short.  Please do try to keep a change in pace, even if you are only getting a few seconds rest or almost swimming continuously on the slower ones, since it great training for your speed endurance.

See you Saturday,

Rob

This week we will be working on an important skill for open water racing – the start.  The specific aspect I want to work is starting fast to help you get into a good position during a mass start and then easing off into a sustainable race pace.  We will be doing this with some positive split 200s – meaning you swim the first 100 fast and then drop back into a steadier and sustainable race pace.

A good way to practice this is to leave a 5s gap and try and get on the feet of the swimmer ahead during the fast 100 and then hang onto their slip stream, without any annoying toe-tapping.  Similarly you can try and few tactics of trying to vary the pace a bit to stay away from the swimmer behind if there is space in the lane.

Swimming at different paces is a feature of good open water racing – taking advantage of swimmers around you to slipstream and trying to stop others take advantage of you – so focus on that during the session this week.

See you Saturday,

Rob

220 Magazine tweeted this week with a link to one of their older articles by Darren Smith about the importance of using your core in swimming (with some good tips that are worth re-reading).  I’ve spoken about this before in a previous post Cutting to the Core and thought it would be a good time to focus on this again.

Using your core is only really effective if you have a good anchor with a high-elbow catch but once you have that high-elbow a strong rotation from your core can make a massive difference in the power you can generate for much less effort.  So this week we will be some more work to focus on the your core by doing some of the drills Chloe Sutton recommended so please do watch her video again here and especially the hip-connector drill, which we haven’t done before.

After the drills we will be doing the ratchet set.  This type of set is a great one to allow you to practise using your core in the first half of the set, swimming with maximal efficiency, so saving some energy for the tighter turnaround times at the end!

See you Saturday!

Rob

It’s time for our USRPT main set of fast 50s again this week.  Read my previous post if you want a reminder on how best to tackle this set to get the most from it.  Also, as it’s the Great East Swim this week I will only be around to coach the 7am session but Chrissie has kindly offered to coach the 8am session.  The session is all mine, though, so don’t blame Chrissie!

See you Saturday,

Rob

This week we will be doing what I call the Brownlee main set of 100s, so-called as the Brownlees say it is one of the favourite swim sets, which we haven’t done for a long time.  It’s very simple and consists of 15 x 100s, swum 1-5 progressively with the 4th 100 being at race pace and the 5th one faster than race pace.  I really like it as contains a little bit of everything we like in a good triathlon main set – it’s specific to our typical race distance of 1,500m, includes a mix of different paced swimming and is great for race-pace endurance.

To do it well make sure you pace yourself at the start so you can really pick up the pace as you go through the set.  And try and pick up the pace as you would when doing a “golf stroke” set by increasing your stroke rate but keeping the same number of strokes per length.

See you Saturday,

Rob

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